Nebraska Innovation Campus


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Suji Park owns and operates Korean restaurants in South Korea and Japan -- and caters food service at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul -- but she has long been drawn to Nebraska’s status as the Beef State. “It’s the Silicon Valley of red meat,” said Park, whose Suji’s Cuisine was announced Monday as the fifth private company and first international tenant of Nebraska Innovation Campus. They already have a sales office employing six people in Omaha. When the Korean food manufacturer opens a research office in the Food Innovation Commons this summer, Park said, Suji’s Cuisine will expand its line of low-sodium, gluten-free beef and pork products that are now on shelves in California and Japan. Suji’s Cuisine will research ways to take authentic Korean recipes, which use allnatural, gluten-free ingredients free of MSG – a sodium commonly used in Asian foods – and produce them safely and efficiently on a large scale. The business plan has gained the confidence of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, which awarded Suji’s Cuisine two “Value-added Agriculture Academic Research and Development” grants totaling $300,000 to create two market-ready meat bowls and two sauces. Invest Nebraska, a private non-profit corporation that offers financial support to high-growth companies, also gave an additional $150,000 in seed money to help Park launch new products. Invest Nebraska is partly financed by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development.